There are Many Paths To A Meaningful Legal Career – Criminal Justice, Investigation, Law Enforcement
Whether during school or after graduation, at some time, law students consider pursuing a career outside the traditional practice of law. The most formidable obstacle is determining precisely how to use a law degree in non-traditional legal settings. While the typical career paths are narrow and well-defined, alternative paths are extremely broad and have many branches, none of which are particularly obvious or categorical. Non-traditional law jobs are not usually found “prefabricated” but are custom-fit to an applicant’s interests, passions, and skills, which requires deliberate and exact self-assessment, as well as painstaking job market research.
For those who have considered using their law degree for some occupation other than the legal profession itself, the skills they’ve developed as a lawyer, paralegal, or legal professional may lead to countless opportunities outside the practice of law. Some of these jobs are a significant departure from practicing law, while others are much less removed. However, these career opportunities all have one thing in common – they require the utilization of some of the same skills developed in law school and the first few years of practice.
Many non-traditional legal careers do not require a law degree but consider it a considerable asset. Law students develop many qualifications that include not just the hard skills, i.e., knowledge of the substantive law, but also include the soft skills, those interpersonal, analytical, and intellectual skills that are necessary to interact with and effectively serve clients. The California Desert Trial Academy focuses on the soft skills that allow graduates to be multi-faceted and flexible so they are equipped to handle jobs beyond the discipline of law.
Careers in criminal justice are found at the federal, state, county, and local levels, as well as in the private sector. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, as of 2016, roughly three million workers were employed in the criminal justice field. This broader field includes subfields such as law enforcement, corrections, forensic science, homeland security, private security, academia, and legal services.
According to statistics reported by the Association for Legal Career Professionals (NALP), each year approximately 10-15% of law school graduates secure employment after graduation in a non-traditional legal position. Jobs available in alternative fields are varied and depend greatly on an applicant’s level and type of education, previous work experience, and desire for personal happiness and satisfaction.
Criminal Justice, Investigation, Law Enforcement
Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms Inspector
Asset Search Investigator
Bank Fraud Investigator
Border Patrol Agent Child Abuse Investigator
Child Support Enforcement
Civil Penalties Officer
Civilian Complaint Review Board Officer
Compliance Support Inspector
Computer Fraud Investigator
Consumer Safety Inspector
Crime Prevention Coordinator
Criminal Justice Administrator
DEA Special Agent
Economic Crimes Investigator
FBI Special Agent
Financial Enforcement Specialist
Fines and Forfeiture Specialist
Foreign Service Narcotics Control Officer
Fraud/White Collar Crime Investigator
Game Law Enforcement Officer
Hidden Assets Investigator
Immigration Inspector Inspector
General Intellectual Property Loss Investigator
Internal Affairs Assistant Dean Deputy
Investigations Review Specialist
Law Enforcement Specialist
Missing Persons Investigator
Municipal Code Enforcement Officer
Securities Fraud Examiner
Seized Property Specialist
Software Piracy Investigator
Special Agent (Wildlife) Treasury Enforcement Agent
Victims Compensation Officer
The California Desert Trial Academy focuses on providing an academic experience that emphasizes a practical approach to becoming a lawyer. We believe this is the most efficient and expedient pathway to a successful and rewarding legal career. At CDTA, we train, educate, and develop students to be exceptional attorneys and trial advocates. Call us today at (760) 342-0900 or find out more online here.